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Last week the medical industry decided to step out on the offense in the world of cybersecurity.

Medical device company St. Jude Medical Inc. created the Cyber Security Medical Advisory Board, to prevent and combat cyber threats.

Today’s current climate calls for heightening cybersecurity measures to protect all types of industries. Hospitals and the health industry are no exception. PWC reports 85% of large health organizations experienced a data breach in 2014. 18% of the breaches cost more than $1 million to recover from.

In 2015, 23% of healthcare organizations had no security operations centers.  This year criminal attacks against healthcare grew 125% over the past 5 years.

Hackers aren’t just after your credit card number or SSN.  They hunt and pawn all types of data, including people’s medical records.  On the black market, electronic health records cost $50 per chart.  In comparison, stolen social security and credit card numbers cost $1.

Read on to learn what different healthcare institutions and tools criminals can hack.

  1. Healthcare Apps 

Fitness apps like Fitbit and hospital apps push people towards a healthier lifestyle.  In 2015 32% of consumers said they had at least one health app on their mobile device.

While these apps can be efficient and helpful, they are also easy to hack.

The Bluetooth radio on fitness tracking devices is an entry point for hackers. Hackers can control wireless fitness devices from 15 ft. away and access all stored data.

Some hospital apps store confidential information including your medical records.  In cases of theft, people access and exploit other’s private health information.  If you don’t want your personal health information invaded, consider our cyberphone GATCA Elite.

The GATCA Elite security feature Coin SL locks down the phone upon SIM card removal.  GATCA Elite’s AES encryption protects all mobile conversations between you and your health provider.

  1. Insurance Companies:

In 2015, Carefirst Blue Cross Blue Shield had 3 data breaches.  Hackers stole more than 90 million individuals social security numbers, income data, and more. Hackers also accessed 113 million medical records.  Identity theft was a main concern.

  1. Ransomware:

A new type of malware shut down computers and databases around the country earlier this year.  Ransomware cuts off all access to a computer until the computer user pays a set amount of money.

Valuable information such as patient’s medical records and necessary treatments became unavailable.  Some hospitals waited days until their IT could recover all their data.  Other hospitals paid the set price because they had no backup files.

The Hollywood Presbyterian Medical Center paid $17,000 in bitcoins to gain

Cybersecurity ranks as #4 on pwc’s top ten health industry issues of 2016.  Low resources, investments and concerns about cybersecurity can cripple the health industry.

Cyber attacks hit the health industry hard these past two years with major repercussions. St. Jude’s realizes the importance of cybersecurity and is heading in the right direction.

 

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